COVID-19 Vaccine & Kids — Here’s What You Should Know

In partnership with The Fresh Toast

The CDC will soon allow children to be vaccinated against COVID-19. Here’s what you should know.

Now that kids between the ages of 5 and 11 will soon be able to get vaccinated against COVID-19, a lot of parents are making plans to visit their nearest pharmacy. And while this is great news, there are some differences between the ways in which the COVID-19 vaccine affects adults and children.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the fact that vaccines for young children will be available soon means that after careful consideration and study, the benefits outrank the risks. Still, here are a few things you should know about the COVID-19 vaccine and its effect on kids:

COVID-19 affects children differently

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COVID-19 is rare in children, although it has increased with the rise of the Delta variant, meaning that if another variant were to appear, kids might be more exposed.

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While COVID-19 is less dangerous in kids than it is in adults, there have been reports of long COVID-19 affecting children, including reactions of fatigue, pain and headaches. Despite the low transmission rate in schools, children are capable of catching and passing on the disease, which is why families with children should be extra careful with the people they meet up with and their degree of exposure.

Like most vaccines, there are some risks to it

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While the COVID-19 vaccine appears to be safe, there are some side effects associated with it, mainly including pain at the site of injection, headaches and fevers. In order to minimize these side effects, COVID-19 dosages in children are smaller, yet they’re still able to produce a sufficient immune response.

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When it comes to risky or strange side effects, although there are no sufficient numbers to support this theory, there is the risk of myocarditis, which has affected some teenagers who’ve received the COVID-19 vaccine. This condition that involves the swelling of the heart has appeared in boys between the ages of 16 and 17. No deaths have been linked to the vaccine.

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